Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Tanner Gun Show

This weekend I had the chance to attend the Tanner Gun Show.  With a proclaimed 700 tables it was a pretty large affair with people buying/trading/selling everything from t-shirts and accessories to jewelry to handguns and rifles.  Most dealers specialized in one thing or another.  I passed tables full of nothing but magazines as well as tables with nothing but reload equipment.  Knives were another popular booth.

There were not many antique firearms dealers.  I talked to a couple who put the price range for my Colt 1849 in the range of $200 to $300.  It had some work done and was not a matching serial numbers piece.  The first dealer I spoke with had purchased a similar era piece that was in worse condition for $200.  He pointed out some of the work that had been done in that era.  The interface between the barrel and the cylinder had been cut down to provide a tight fit.  This was to prevent powder escape when firing.  Even if the Colt were more original, the book prices are greatly exaggerated.

While there, I also took a look at later model firearms.  I was very surprised by the price range for the same item in the same condition.  Between four dealers the price for a particular .38 automatic was from $280 to $350.  This may not seem like a big range, but $350 represents a 25% premium to whatever mark-up the low end dealer had included.

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